USA Today removes TWENTY THREE stories from its website over claims reporter made-up quotes and fabricated interviewees for stories on Texas abortion ban, Ukraine and a guide to sunscreen
- USA Today said it has deleted 23 articles from its website after an investigation found that the reporter who wrote them used fabricated sources
- Gabriela Miranda, a breaking news reporter, resigned from the Virginia-based newspaper weeks ago
- Miranda was assigned to cover ‘trending news nationwide’ while at USA Today
- Before being hired by USA Today, she covered education and the Hispanic community with the Gainesville Times in Georgia
USA Today has removed 23 news stories from its website following an internal audit which found that a reporter who wrote them had misattributed quotes and may have made up interviews and sources.
Gabriela Miranda who was the newspaper’s ‘breaking news reporter’ has since resigned from her post.
Meanwhile, USA Today has removed the almost two dozen stories that she wrote between spring 2021 and 2022. Users clicking on the links are greeted with the message: ‘This story has been removed from our platforms because it does not meet our standards.’
The company revealed that it had conducted an investigation into Miranda’s reporting following an ‘external correction request’, but did not elaborate further.
The audit was then widened to look at a broader stretch of her reporting with a focus on trending topics and viral stories.
USA Today said it has deleted 23 articles from its website after an investigation found that the reporter who wrote them used fabricated sources
Gabriela Miranda, a breaking news reporter, resigned from the Virginia-based newspaper weeks ago after the paper found she ‘took steps to deceive investigators and produced false evidence of her news gathering’
‘The audit revealed that some quoted individuals were not affiliated with the organizations claimed and appeared to be fabricated,’ the newspaper explained in a statement. ‘The existence of other individuals quoted could not be independently verified. In addition, some stories included quotes that should have been credited to others.’
USA Today found Miranda took steps to deceive investigators and produced false evidence of her news gathering, including recordings of interviews, reports the New York Times.
Miranda’s first story for USA Today was published in spring 2021, while her most recent piece was in April about a cargo ship stuck that became stuck in the Chesapeake Bay. That article has not been retracted.
Articles that were removed include coverage related to Texas’ ban on abortion after six weeks, the reaction of women in Ukraine to the Russian invasion and a guide to sunscreen.
Miranda was assigned to cover ‘trending news nationwide’ while at USA Today
After graduating from the University of Georgia, Miranda worked for the Gainesville Times covering education and issues affecting the Hispanic community before leaving for her role at USA Today.
Miranda recently appeared during a panel discussion for the Society of Professional Journalists at Stony Brook University. She stated how she was working on the breaking news and enterprise beat.
She said that it was an area she ‘really wanted to go into.’ She has since deleted her LinkedIn profile and Twitter account.
USA Today stated that it was going to introduce a series of measures to stop similar issues from happening including a way for complaints and corrections to be made easier.
The publication also said that stories will need to ‘have clear and sufficient identifying information for quoted individuals’ and a mandate to ‘apply additional scrutiny to sources found through blind connections on social media platforms, via email, etc.’
Before being hired by USA Today, she covered education and the Hispanic community with the Gainesville Times in Georgia
Miranda’s exit comes a week after Washington Post reporter Felicia Sonmez was fired from her job after indulging in a multi-day Twitter diatribe against a male colleague who retweeted a sexist joke, and colleagues who stood up for him or failed to impose draconian discipline.